Contact: Patti Lorenzen
Media Representative

News Releases

Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Updates Analysis of Bakken Oil Patch Data

Minneapolis, January 3, 2013 The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis has updated a detailed analysis of the Bakken oilfield in North Dakota and Montana on its web site, including a summary of Recent Trends and a Full Report on oil production, demographic, economic and financial data.

  • Overall, oil production and economic and banking activities continue to expand at a rapid pace in the Bakken area; however, the rate of increase for some indicators has moderated over the past five months.
  • Monthly oil production in the Bakken area increased by 3.1 million barrels, or 16 percent, from May to October. During this period, the increase in Bakken oil production represented about 40 percent of the increase in the U.S. total.
  • The number of active drilling operations in North Dakota dropped below 200 in recent months as oil companies sought to cut costs and increase efficiency after drilling a number of initial producing wells to meet leasing requirements (N.D. Dept. of Mineral Resources projects drilling rigs will climb above 200 again in 2013). Meanwhile, drilling in Montana picked up recently as oil companies expanded their exploration in the western part of the Bakken.
  • Employment levels have continued to expand. The unemployment rate in the Bakken is now 1.8 percent, down from 2 percent in April. However, the number of job postings in the North Dakota part of the Bakken has leveled since June.
  • The two most recent quarters of data, from 3/31/2012 to 9/30/2012, show construction and land development loans increasing 64 percent, from $107 million to $176 million, in the Bakken area, while increasing 12 percent in the rest of North Dakota and decreasing 2 percent in the rest of Montana.

The Bakken Oil Boom web page also includes data on oil production, labor markets, and business and banking activity that are updated on a regular basis. In addition, the site highlights fedgazette articles on trends and issues facing the Bakken area.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis monitors business and economic conditions throughout its Ninth District, which encompasses Montana, North and South Dakota, Minnesota, northwestern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Data, reports and articles on these states and on the many industries throughout the district can be found on the Bank’s website.